My September interview features Casper Grathwohl, VP and Publisher, Oxford University Press Reference.
Casper’s interview and several others are also available on the interviews page of the blog.
Credo Reference Launches New and Improved Interface
Innovative features greatly enhance research experience
Boston and Oxford, September 3, 2008 – Credo Reference, the award-winning online reference library, has completely updated and enhanced its interface. The new and improved platform now features key elements developed as a result of direct feedback and testing with librarians worldwide. Credo’s user-friendly interface has been optimized to address different types of reference questions.
Credo Reference and its continually expanding online collection provide cross-searchable access to more than three million entries from 300+ key titles and 60+ publishers. Now, with the newly revamped interface, Credo Reference users will be able to take advantage of such features as:
· Faceted browsing – refine searches in many different ways, such as by subject, type of content, person or entries with images or audio.
· Improved Concept Map – Credo’s visualization tool.
· Direct linking to the resources of a library’s choice – view search results in another library resource with one click through Credo’s new “Related Resources” feature. Library configurable.
· Multilingual interface – English, Chinese, French, Polish, Spanish and Urdu are currently available. More languages to follow.
· Citation management – export saved results to the user’s tool of choice, such as RefWorks or EndNote.
· Bookmarking in a favorite, social networking site, such as Del.icio.us or Facebook.
· Explore titles by heading, person, place, image, audio or video. Hover over an entry in the index for a preview.
The beta-testers for this new interface raved about the enhancements. “One of the strongest features of the interface is Credo’s cross-referencing – ‘Related Entries’, which can help our students expand their research beyond their original search,” commented Gloria Rohmann, New York University Digital Access Librarian. “Our researchers will now be able to click directly from a Credo entry to a related topic, with no extra typing required. That will help make their research experience smoother and more thorough.”
“The new interface is a lot more intuitive, which makes it easier to maneuver through,” agreed Anna Grigson, Assistant Digital Resources Librarian at University of Westminster Library. “The vastly improved Concept Map – which is great for visual learners – helps to better visualize the relationships between topics, something that can be invaluable with more complex research topics. It’s great that Credo Reference is reaching out to all researchers no matter what their language or learning style.”
“We’re pleased to launch the significantly enhanced Credo Reference platform,” added John G. Dove, Credo Reference President. “We’ve listened carefully to all the feedback that we’ve received from librarians and end-users and have worked to develop a reference experience that matches our unparalleled and exceptional content. Our intention is to save time for learners, which is what reference is all about.”
Credo Reference, with offices in Oxford and Boston, has been offering completely customizable reference collections for libraries since 1999. Formerly known as Xrefer, Credo’s General Reference and Specialist Reference services combine extensive content from multiple publishers with unique cross-referencing technology, effortlessly delivering authoritative answers to over four million researchers worldwide. Visit www.credoreference.com.
316 Stuart Street, Suite 301 Boston MA 02116
Monday, August 11th I stopped by the Encyclopaedia Britannica offices on LaSalle street in Chicago. I visited Michael Ross, Senior VP of Corporate Development. Michael gave me a nice tour of the Britannica headquarters and I took some photos to share with everyone. You’ll see some remarkable similarities between an international publisher and a library.
Seriously now, Britannica has a really cool feature coming to all of their online products sometime this fall. Right now it is called “project darwin” but it will take on a new name online. This new feature will bring web 2.0 features to Britannica online including user comment/feedback areas. Some other facts about Britannica:
Over one million visitors use Britannica online every day.
Britannica offers multiple interfaces for their products (they manage over 30) – public (free, with annoy wear) , individual membership, institutional/libraries, and multiple foreign language interfaces including Japanese, Chinese, Korean, French, and 2 in Spanish.
They offer thousands of videos too.
Britannica Blog offers daily posts on thousands of topics, by hundreds of writers – many well known.
For more information, check out Britannica Online here: www.britannica.com
And thanks, Michael, for the tour!
For those of you unable to attend the ALA Panel – The Future of Reference Publishing: A View from the Top, there is a summary of the program available on Booklist Online.
We encourage comments, questions, and discussion on the blog.
The last question asked during the ALA panel was asked by panelist, Michael Ross from Encyclopaedia Britannica. He wanted to know from the librarians in the audience, “what do you want from us?”
Librarians were not shy in extending several responses:
§ I need to make my purchasing decision based on reviews. So, I need to find reviews and awards information easier on a publishers site, to determine and justify my purchase decision
§ More creative pricing models – to support many sizes and needs of institutions (ie. 2 simultaneous users, own, subscribe, collections)
§ Reference sources are duplicated too much. We have dozens of articles with same information. Can you all publish unique things?
§ Consistency in search protocols across platforms – boolean, truncation, plurals, default search, etc (better yet, how about one single platform, SP)
Librarians, what else is on your wish list for reference publishers? Place your comments here so our panelists can see them.
Check out the new Off The Shelf Column in Booklist, June 1, 2008. This is a preview to the ALA Program with the same title. Don’t miss it, Anaheim Convention Center, 204B, Monday, June 30th, 10:30 – 12:00.
SAGE Acquires CQ Press, Book-Publishing Unit of Congressional Quarterly Inc. Los Angeles, London, New Delhi, Singapore and Washington, DC (May 30, 2008) — CQ Press, the book publishing unit of Washington-based Congressional Quarterly Inc. (CQ), has been sold to SAGE, the leading independent academic publisher. The sale was announced jointly by Robert W. Merry, CQ’s President and Editor-in-Chief, and Blaise Simqu, SAGE’s President and CEO. CQ’s corporate parent, Times Publishing Co. of St. Petersburg, Florida, announced on January 3 that it would divest CQ Press in order to direct investment resources to other opportunities, notably the core CQ publishing business and the company’s award-winning newspaper, The St. Petersburg Times. CQ Press serves the library, college and professional markets with a diverse array of print and online products. It publishes about 100 new titles each year, with a growing and authoritative list of textbooks and reference titles focusing on political science, mass communication and related disciplines. SAGE plans to keep CQ Press intact as a separate division based in Washington, D.C., bearing the CQ Press imprint, and retaining all CQ Press employees under the senior management team that will remain in place, including Publisher John A. Jenkins, who will also carry the title of President of CQ Press. “We’re very pleased CQ Press is joining the global SAGE family,” said Simqu. “CQ Press and SAGE enjoy a shared mission and values. Both are driven by a passion for scholarship and innovation that impacts education and public policy. John Jenkins and the rest of the CQ Press executive team have created an impressive publishing enterprise that will further enhance SAGE’s presence in the marketplace.” SAGE, founded in 1965 as a publisher of academic journals, has expanded into a global education publisher of books, journals and electronic products. In four locations around the world, SAGE publishes more than 500 journals and 700 books a year encompassing 40 disciplines within the academic and scholarly arena. “I couldn’t be more delighted with this outcome,” said Merry. “Everyone in our company felt SAGE was ideally positioned to take this fine enterprise to new heights while preserving its culture and stability.” He added he was particularly impressed with SAGE’s commitment to editorial excellence and business integrity – two qualities highly prized at CQ and the Times Publishing Co. Merry said the sale will allow CQ to focus resources on its traditional journalistic enterprise as the premier provider of news and analysis on Congress, politics and public policy. He added the company will expand its mission aggressively, particularly in web publishing. The Jordan Edmiston Group, Inc., the leading provider of independent investment banking services for the media and information industries, represented Times Publishing Co. in this transaction. ### is a leading international publisher of journals, books, and electronic media for academic, educational, and professional markets. Since 1965, SAGE has helped inform and educate a global community of scholars, practitioners, researchers, and students spanning a wide range of subject areas including business, humanities, social sciences, and science, technology and medicine. A privately owned corporation, SAGE has principal offices in Los Angeles, London, New Delhi, and Singapore. www.sagepublications.com CQ Press is a leading publisher of books, directories, research publications, and web products on U.S. government, world affairs, and communication. Its College Publishing Group produces an authoritative list of textbooks on political science and mass communications. The Reference Information Group provides reference and business information to libraries and professional markets, with a growing focus on digital content and delivery. CQ Press’s content is known for its objectivity, breadth and depth of coverage, and high standards of editorial excellence. www.cqpress.com Congressional Quarterly Inc. keeps the public informed and updated through print and online publications and books, with more than 150 reporters, editors and researchers covering Capitol Hill and Washington. CQ provides comprehensive and objective information on Congress, politics and public policy. Its products include: CQ Weekly, CQ Today, CQ.com, CQ Homeland Security, CQ Budget Tracker, CQ HealthBeat, CQ MoneyLine, CQ Politics, and Governing magazine. www.cq.com
Mary Kay Jezzini
For Congressional Quarterly
Robert W. Merry
For CQ Press
John A. Jenkins
Headed to Anaheim? Mark your calendars for this not to miss event:
2008 ALA Annual, Anaheim
Monday, June 30, 2008 10:30 – 12:00
Anaheim Convention Center 204B
Reference Books Bulletin (Booklist) sponsored program:
The Future of Electronic Reference Publishing: A View from the Top.
Top managers from reference publishing share their views about planning for tomorrow in a digital age and the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.
John Barnes, Exec. V.P. Marketing and Strategic Planning, Gale/Cengage
Casper Grathwohl, V.P. and Publisher, Oxford University Press
Rolf Janke, VP/Publisher, SAGE Reference
Michael Ross, Sr. V.P. Corporate Development, Encyclopedia Britannica
Sue Polanka, Chair, Reference Books Bulletin Editorial Board
John Dove spent an afternoon with me at WSU. We sat down for a chat about reference, the role of reference, and of the reference librarian in the digital world. Have a listen.
I recommend you save the file to your computer first, then listen. Enjoy!
Listen to other No Shelf Required interviews here.
If you’ve ever heard me give a presentation about eBooks, then you’ve probably heard my soap box rant about the plethora of eBook platforms. I can’t stand it. I look forward to the day when all of my e-content – reference, monographs, textbooks, whatever – will be on one consistent platform, fully searchable by keyword and every other possible facet. With ALA Annual coming up in June, I am asking all of you who feel the same to please remind the publishers that we want one platform for our electronic content. I know I’m not alone here. I’ve just heard some rumors from a publisher that librarians in Japan asked for the exact same thing – one central platform!
Here’s an excerpt from my Nov. 1, 2008 article in Reference Books Bulletin about eBook platforms:
Make access a priority. The best way to drive business to e-reference is through the online catalog. Make sure all MARC records are in the catalog with persistent links to the e-books. Strive to use as few interfaces as possible. Our comparison chart lists 6 vendors, each with a unique interface and special features; how can we make things simpler? Purchase titles to own, and get the licensing agreement to provide a copy of the e-book in either the HTML, XML, or PDF version. With this data, libraries can mount all e-book content on 1 platform, like Ebrary, or an open-source product, like XTF. Or purchase from vendors that support multiple publishers in one platform—Gale Virtual Reference Library is a good example. Another good option for access is through Paratext’s Reference Universe, which indexes the table of contents, entries, and thousands of print and electronic titles. It’s a deeper search than the catalog, uses one interface, and has persistent links to the article level of e-books and to the catalog record of print titles. When shopping around, talk to publishers about access, and remind them that fewer interfaces make for simple searching by users and librarians.